Another year has raced on past, so quickly, in fact, we couldn’t get this annual year in review out before the end of the year! It’s always a time where we reflect on the year, and to update all our friends, family, and online followers.

The Woods in Switzerland
Enjoying the unseasonal snow in Hasliberg Switzerland

We would have to say that the best and the worst part of our year was our European adventure! It was an amazing 3-month journey, visiting Greece, Italy, Switzerland, Portugal, Spain, Morocco, Holland, Belgium, and London. We soaked up all the cultural beauty, perfect weather, wine on balconies, beach fun, snow-capped mountains, and all the things you expect from a European vacation! Switzerland was voted by most of the family as the ‘top pick’ of the trip. The original schedule also included a visit to Paris after Belgium, but unfortunately, our holiday ended rather abruptly three weeks earlier than expected, with Jetson fracturing his skull by falling off some stairs. A weeks hospital stay and a ban on flying for a while saw Rob and Jetson stay in the Belgian heaven of chocolate, waffles, fries, and beer for an extra month, while Clare, Olive, and Casper continued on to London, then flew back to Australia for school and work. From what was a very scary experience, all has fortunately turned out very well with no lasting effects.

A perfect time to ride in the desert
Our sunset ride in the Moroccan desert

Returning from Europe we had to find a new house to rent, and after a frustrating search for a suitable place, we are back in Mount Hawthorn, Western Australia, among our friends and close to our great primary school. Once the kids move into high school (which is coming up too quickly!)  we may look to move elsewhere, but for now, we are happy.

Olive in Rome
Olive at the Piazza Navona in Rome

Olive turned 10 while in Greece, and had a great year in year 5, and we can’t believe she only has one more year of primary school. She was selected this year for the academic extension program, which has been really motivating for her. She has been enjoying and really engaged playing netball for the spring season. Not only is she starting to look a lot like her mum, she scarily almost fits into her shoes, wearing her thongs already. One might also suspect she is turning the corner into the teenage years, but there are still a few years to go yet!!

Jetson in Athens
Sporty Jetson in at the Olympic stadium in Athens

Jetson finished up year 2 this year. He still quotes his age as a year older than he actually is, which I think is so he can get extra cuddles from mum at night because one of his exercises is hugs to strengthen his arms. Clare can’t wait till he is older to get more. He still makes us proud with his extra crazy fun-loving character, and his resilience (proven again by his ability to get through the Belgium misadventure). He had no scheduled surgeries this year, however, he must love the hospital, returning with his fractured skull, taking it all in his stride! Jetson is loving cricket at the moment and is really stoked with mum’s new job.

Casper jumping for joy in Switzerland
Casper jumping on a trampoline in Hasliberg Switzerland

Casper has had an amazing year in pre-primary this year, with fabulous teachers to draw him out of his shell a little. He has enjoyed playing indoor soccer all year, with a team shirt with his name on it! He is still the family resident artist.

Clare tried to take on more than she could handle this year, applying for a part-time role as sports dietitian at the WACA. Then she realised that working at both WAIS and the cricket was way too much, and it was time to make a change, resigning from WAIS, with cricket taking over her life! She attended the Sports Dietitians conference in Melbourne in late October for some networking and further education, after which she was flown to Hobart for the cricket one-day cup final, which the WA team won!

Enjoying some Belgium beers
Rob and Clare enjoying some Belgium beers in Bruges

Rob is working diligently in the office as always, although having to take on the almost full-time dad role briefly tore him away from his passion. In his spare time, he is usually at the computer too, planning our next getaway.

Some of the other trips we did this year included Sydney early in January visiting Rob’s brother Peter, camping with Clare’s family at Yallingup in February and Dryandra in the October holidays, and finally meeting up with the American cousins in Melbourne in December for the christening of our nephew Rocket, where we were privileged to be the godparents. Next year we have trips to Sri Lanka and Darwin on the cards.

Woods in Sydney
Visiting Sydney in January 2017

We hope you all have had a fabulous year, enjoy the festive season and holiday break.

Rob, Clare, Olive, Jetson, and Casper.

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